One of the greatest joys of a warmer season and climate is going outside to enjoy the warm weather and sunshine. Being outside is one of the first steps towards feeling lighter and more alive. Whether it’s to take a leisurely stroll, hike, cycle, play a sport, practice yoga or just rest the one thing these all have in common to make these activities more enjoyable is a little planning and preparation.
Here are five tips to make your outdoor yoga practice a little more enjoyable.
Plan for a sunrise or sunset practice.
Practicing outside comes with the risk of harsh sun exposure. This can take a toll on your eyes, your skin and in cases where someone is sensitive to the heat can cause some discomfort by way of a dis-regulating their nervous system. If a sunrise or sunset option is not available, consider placing your mat in a shaded spot if you are particularly sensitive to the sun and heat.
Drink plenty of water the day before your planned class and hydrate both before and after your class. Yoga supports your endocrine and lymphatic systems by way of the movements. The more hydrated you are, the more comfortable you will be during your practice.
Pro Tip: Add electrolytes to your water for extra cellular support!
Sunscreen and bug repellent.
There are many natural products available on the market made of non toxic, natural ingredients that can help protect your skin from the natural elements. Being prepared by using these two items as skin care before you dress for your yoga event will ensure your experience outside will be a more pleasant one.
Pro Tip : Use Rhonda’s favorite - TerraShield blend by Doterra
Hair clips, hair bands, bandanas or hats.
Practicing yoga outside comes with many natural distractions that normally do not occur in a controlled studio environment. Using hair clips, hair bands, bandanas or hats to keep your hair, sweat or sun out of your eyes will help you remain focused so you achieve greater balance despite the challenges of an uneven natural surface or having something in your eyes. These tools can also be used to clip your shirts in the event you need to “tie” them up to keep them out of your face while in inversions such as downward facing dog, forward folds or headstands.
Planning in advance for the type of surface you’ll be practicing on can assist in a more comfortable practice. Use yoga mats that are more foam based for wood or concrete surfaces or larger lawn blankets that are more forgiving and flexible on sandy or grassy surfaces. If you will be doing yoga after a rainy day or on the water with a stand up paddle board, keep a tarp and towels on hand for using under your mat, under your board during inflation and deflation, and drying off after your practice.
Pro tip: Pack a small cooler with an ice pack and a damp washcloth in a bag with a few drops of your favorite essential oils for cooling off and refreshing after your practice.
Rhonda’s favorite lavender essential oil by DōTerra for this can be found here.
While these wouldn’t necessarily be classified as needs, these tips can certainly make your practice a more comfortable one.
For a fun outdoor yoga experience check out these local events.
See you on the mat, Yogis!